Building Blocks: Haiti Edition Day 2

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GOD CAN DO IT AGAIN!

“On one occasion, while the crowd was pressing in on Him to hear the word of God, He was standing by the lake of Gennesaret, and He saw two boats by the lake, but the fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets. Getting into one of the boats, which was Simon’s, He asked him to put out a little from the land. And He sat down and taught the people from the boat. And when He had finished speaking, He said to Simon, ‘Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.’ And Simon answered, ‘Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at your word I will let down the nets.’” Luke 5:1-5

Ever been off-roading? Then you know what we experienced this morning. After a hearty breakfast, our entourage of three SUVs filled with our team in our Sunday’s best, we departed for our community of Zoranje. We maneuvered through Port-Au-Prince morning traffic and trekked up and down the boulder-filled makeshift mountain roads to Zoranje. Our scrambled eggs and croissants came close to being breakfast for some goats along the side of the hill.

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It’s so easy to see why it takes families great effort to get supplies and even the slimmest of necessities. Women walked with baskets of produce balanced on their heads. Children muscled their way up the mountain with a bucket of water in each hand. The daily life struggles hit us like a wave of despair, but as we turned into the church property all of that changed. We were about to meet our new family!

As we checked out the job site, an unmistakable sound came from a makeshift building of blue tarp, wood posts and a tin roof. Erupting from this church was the sweet musical harmony of a restful, hopeful people with complete and abandoned worship. Even though it was in a language we could not understand, we knew they were worshipping The One who can bring hope even in the most hopeless of situations.

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The service started at 9:45am. Our minds flashed to our home church. At this very hour 1000s of miles away we were both engaged in worship of the same God…Two different cultures, two different countries and one loving God who gave His Son for ALL! Then we thought of the churches that are part of our project… In Derby, Brookfield and Stamford they were gathered to connect with God just as the communities of Zion, Caanan and Jerusalem here in Haiti were.

Even though we understood very little of the language, from the opening note to the closing prayer, it was clear that the spirit of God was here among us! His Holy Spirit was present and ministered to each of us.

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The small room truly was a sanctuary of true worship. The voices of children at worship brought tears of joy, but the sweet presence of the Holy Spirit overwhelmed our hearts… Jesus was here to meet with us! And we had church!

The band rocked it. The people sang their hearts out. And the glory of God filled the room with a fragrance that swept us into the presence of a living God who resides in the hearts of all who seek Him!

Pastor Fraunz spoke in Creole while Pastor Bill (one of the missionaries here in Haiti) translated in English, word for word and action for action. They delivered a message of listening to and obeying when God speaks to us.

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“GOD CAN DO IT AGAIN!” Pastor Bill (through PF) shouted over and over, resonating a powerful and positive message in our hearts. God is bigger than any problem we have.

Almost one year to the day, since they opened the “tarp” church with a handful of people, 90 people gathered in church to celebrate that “GOD CAN DO IT AGAIN.”

After the service, outside of the church the kids flocked around us, some curiously shy but others a little more outgoing. One boy challenged a few of us to the “hand slap game.” The boy got so intense and into the games. Meghan, Amber and Nathaniel walked away with bright red hands and a deep sense of defeat.

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Richard, our host missionary drove us from one side of Port-Au-Prince to the other in search of fried chicken and pickleys (a spicy cole slaw) that Pastor Andy actually likes. As we dismantled our chickens, we laughed and continued to connect as a team.

Back at the guesthouse, for the rest of the day some of us relaxed on the balcony patio. The others went for a walk and played soccer with the local kids at a field nearby.

Tomorrow we look forward to our first “work day.” It is going to be a very early morning and a long day toiling in the sun. We thank you in advance for praying for us, for strength and energy to work, for team cohesiveness and for us to be a light for this community.

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